The new genuine fake

    The record industry is a business, not a charity organisation, so why is it some people think they can treat it as the latter?
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    The record industry is a business, not a charity organisation, so why is it some people think they can treat it as the latter?

    For years, music was respected as an art form, in which people were privileged with the right to be able to purchase the work, but now it seems many no longer rate it as a privilege to pay for, rather a free right.

    Copyright violation and piracy has grown at an alarming rate in recent years and is severely damaging the recording industry to a point where its future remains in question.

    Music artists, song writers, publishers and producers are crying foul play and demanding further measures are taken to protect their work and hold offenders accountable.

    Unfortunately, the difficulties facing the industry, from the unauthorised reproduction of work, appear to be escalating faster than the laws are being enforced and amended to contain the problem on a global scale.

    The collective financial toll of these violations is reportedly costing the global record industry billions in lost revenues.

    Disappointingly, there is no sign of relief, with Strategy Analytic reporting an ominous outlook for the global decline in CD sales.

    In 2007, its summary reported that worldwide CD sales were down more than 13% compared with 2006, and it predicted the decline to continue rapidly until 2012.

    While CD sales continue to fall, reports suggest that revenue received from legitimate downloads is steadily increasing, but it's still at a much slower rate than the decline of income from the sale of physical units.

    Those reliant on 'traditional' music sales are facing grim times, evident in the number of CD stores closing down and staff cuts record companies and music publishers have been forced to make in recent years.

    The fight to see CD sales increase and piracy abated will be an arduous task that will only continue to grow inline with new technologies, faster internet connections - spurred on by the ignorance of people who do not perceive the actual cost of their actions.

    The true impact of such violations will only be fully realised, when the voice that once was known as the recording industry is no longer heard. It's a bittersweet irony that offenders face, save now, but pay later.

    Kelly Lewis is the editor of Sound & Stage Middle East.

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